HC Deb 10 July 1957 vol 573 cc350-1
18. Major Beamish

asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs what British Broadcasting Corporation foreign language broadcasts are now being jammed, and by which countries; when protests were last made, and with what results; and whether the Soviet Government has now given an explanation of the intensification of jamming after a period of comparatively little interference.

The Joint Under-Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Ian Harvey)

British Broadcasting Corporation broad- casts in the following languages are jammed by the Soviet Union and by all the satellites except Poland: Russian, German, Finnish, Hebrew, Persian, Turkish, all the satellite languages and some in Greek. The latest representations were made by the Prime Minister in his recent letter to Mr. Bulganin, but the Soviet authorities show no signs at present of ending jamming.

The Soviet Government have stated that British Broadcasting Corporation broadcasts were jammed because they might have created an incorrect impression of the British people and led to the development of anti-British sentiments.

Major Beamish

Is the Under-Secretary of State aware that one of the main reasons given for the sacking of Messrs. Molotov, Malenkov and several others was that they did not have a genuine belief in friendship and understanding among the nations? Would it not be a most welcome gesture if Mr. Khrushchev now gave orders for the ending of this jamming?

Mr. Harvey

My hon. and gallant Friend has made a most useful suggestion.

Mr. Mikardo

Would not our righteous protests against this reprehensible practice be more pungent if we had never done any jamming ourselves?

Mr. Harvey

No, Sir. A policy of weakness in these matters is altogether to be regretted.

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